25 Amazing Short-Order Diner Slang Terms You Should Start Using Daily

Mike Gebert/Thrillist

There's a lot to admire about diner waiters. They are impossibly fast, never seem to drop anything, and talk in a secret language even more intriguing than Pig Latin. Strike that -- infinitely more intriguing than Pig Latin. You'd have to log time in an actual 24-hour joint to become fluent in the varied, hilarious diner dialect (and you'd possibly need to brush up on the Bible), but here are a few key terms to get you started. May your dog soup never come tepid, and your first lady always be extra meaty:

Flickr/Janet Ramsden

Elephant dandruff: cornflakes

Dog soup: water

Nervous pudding: Jell-O

Blonde with sand: coffee with cream and sugar

Adam and Eve on a raft: two poached eggs on toast

Radio [sandwich]: tuna fish sandwich (because it sounds like "tune a" -- get it??)

Flickr/Kenny Louie

Sinkers and suds: coffee and donuts

Bloodhound in the hay: hot dog with sauerkraut

Mystery in the alley: side order of hash browns

Cup of mud/mug of murk: cup of coffee

Wreck 'em: scrambled eggs

Slab of moo, let him chew it: rare rump steak

Noah’s boy on bread: ham sandwich (Noah, of Ark fame, had a son named Ham)

Flickr/Boris Mann

Burn the British: toasted English muffin

Paint it red: put ketchup on it

Cowboy with spurs: Western omelet with French fries

Drag one through Georgia: Coke with chocolate syrup (this one refers to Coca-Cola's HQ state)

Shingle with a shimmy and a shake: toast with butter and jam

Burn one, take it through the garden, and pin a rose on it: burger with lettuce, tomato, and onion


Eve with a lid on it: slice of apple pie (because Eve gave Adam an apple)

Cow feed: salad

Put out the lights and cry: liver and onions

Bronx vanilla/halitosis: garlic

First lady: spare ribs (Eve was the first lady on Earth, and she took Adam's rib)

Twist it, choke it, and make it crackle: chocolate malt milkshake with an egg

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Kristin Hunt is a staff writer for Thrillist, and thinks most of these sound like violent Bop It! commands. Follow her through the garden at @kristin_hunt.